How to get five plants from one supermarket basil

How to get five plants from one supermarket basil

Find out how you can get five plants from one basil plant bought at the supermarket, in this simple guide.

A table displaying which months are best to sow, plant and harvest.
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
At its best
At its best

Plant is not at its best in January

Plant is not at its best in February

Plant is not at its best in March

Plant is not at its best in April

Plant is not at its best in May

Plant is not at its best in June

Plant is at its best in July

Plant is at its best in August

Plant is at its best in September

Plant is not at its best in October

Plant is not at its best in November

Plant is not at its best in December

To do
To do

Do not To do in January

Do not To do in February

Do not To do in March

Do not To do in April

Do not To do in May

Do To do in June

Do To do in July

Do not To do in August

Do not To do in September

Do not To do in October

Do not To do in November

Do not To do in December

You can grow basil from seed, but there’s a much easier way to boost your stock of basil plants. Just take one supermarket basil – which is actually many seedlings squashed together in one pot – and split them. You can get around five plants for free – not bad for an initial outlay of about £1.

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Here’s how to split the plants up, giving them the light, space and food they need to thrive.

Take one supermarket basil - which is actually many seedlings squashed together in one pot - and split them.
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You Will Need

  • Small plastic pots (five), about 9cm diameter
  • Multi-purpose, peat-free compost, peat free
  • Basil plant (one), from supermarket
  • Secateurs or a sharp knife

Total time:

Step 1

Take the supermarket basil plant and cut off any leggy shoots, back to a strong pair of growing buds. Next, take the basil plant out of the pot and gently, without touching the stems or leaves of the plant, divide the rootball.

Splitting the basil rootball
Splitting the basil rootball

Step 2

You should get around five equal-sized pieces. Each will probably have three or four plants in it. Place a little compost into the base of your small plastic pots.

Divided basil plants
Divided basil plants

Step 3

Plant each section into a pot, adding more compost as required, so the plant is at the same level it was in the original pot. Water from below. Once the roots start to come out of the bottom of the pot, replant into slightly larger pots.

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Potting up basil
Potting up basil
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Give your plants sunshine

Basil does best in a sunny spot – for the best results, place your plants on a sunny windowsill.

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